California Proposition 213 Precludes Recovery for Uninsured Motorists
The effects of uninsured drivers on insurance rates for drivers obeying mandatory liability insurance laws and the consequences of uninsured drivers causing auto accidents motivated California voters to protect themselves in 1996. Responding to strong public opinion about the dangers and liabilities of uninsured drivers, California lawmakers passed Proposition 213, and it became effective January 1, 1997. This piece of legislation removes the rights of uninsured motorists to bring lawsuits for pain and suffering. The law states that when an auto accident occurs, an injured driver must be able to show that he or she had liability insurance at the time of the accident to collect “general damages” from the “at fault” driver.
The only exception to Proposition 213 is written into the law and states that if the driver or owner of an uninsured vehicle was in an auto accident, he or she can still collect general damages if the driver found to be “at fault” was operating his or her vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. However, under all other circumstances, if the driver of an uninsured vehicle is involved in a motor vehicle accident, whether he, she or another driver is found to be at fault for causing the accident, the driver of the uninsured vehicle may not file any kind of a claim for damages.
Essentially, this means that if a driver fails to obey California law and purchase mandatory liability insurance, that driver forfeits the opportunity to file for damages against another driver. If you or someone you care for sustained injury in an accident caused by an uninsured motorist, South Central Los Angeles auto accident attorney Samer Habbas may be able to help. Call his law offices today to schedule a free consultation about your case with this experienced Orange County injury lawyer.